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Vintage RAT Pedal - Looking For Advice


Rowbee
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I hope the mods don't mind me posting this here (I know it's more of a guitar effect than bass, but I'm aware bassists do use them), but I'm looking for some advice which is mostly about the value of my RAT pedal.

 

I was given it a few years back whilst in a now defunct rehearsal studio in Santa Monica, and it's sat on a shelf since then.

 

I saw a Facebook marketplace post the other day where someone was selling one and they mentioned it contained the much coveted Motorola LM308.  Doing a dig and checking the serials on the CTS pots, I discovered that mine is in fact the mid-80s "White Face" model.

 

Clearly, from the photos it's either a bit battered, or full of wonderful mojo, but does anyone know how much these go for?  I've seen various models on eBay, but most a later models or vintage reissues.

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Posted (edited)

There's a lot of mystique about various issues of Rats. I sold a 'Woodcutter' Rat a while back for a song just because a certain chap who made them ('Woodcutter')  made better Rats...from the same components as everyone else who made them.

 

There you go :)

 

 

Anyway, original Whitefaces can go for up to £200 in good condition IIRC.

 

Edited by ahpook
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, ahpook said:

There's a lot of mystique about various issues of Rats. I sold a 'Woodcutter' Rat a while back for a song just because a certain chap who made them ('Woodcutter')  made better Rats...from the same components as everyone else who made them.

 

There you go :)

 

 

Anyway, original Whitefaces can go for up to £200 in good condition IIRC.

 

I just recently read an article about Proco RAT's history, and the myth about this "Woodcutter" was mentioned too.

 

Turns out he was just some guy who was really fast at assembling RATs, that's right, he didn't make them, he just stuffed the parts together, as you say, the same parts as everyone else, and he had no knowledge whatsoever about electronics or pedal design.

 

The name is there so they could trace down any eventual faulty unit to whoever happened to assembly the specific individual unit in question, and this "Woodcutter" was as said really fast at assembling them, so he got his name on a lot of RATs, and the name he just got from a part time job cutting wood, to identify him as they had a lot of workers who shared his real name, which I fail to remember right now, nothing mysteriously really about it.

 

I find it ambiguously funny and depressing/tragic at the same time how much especially guitard gear heads seemingly completely uncritically believes and continues to replicate pure myths as if they were nature laws and keeps listening with their eyes, like as if their aural perception is filtered through this thick layer of pure nonsense. 

Edited by Baloney Balderdash
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13 hours ago, ahpook said:

There's a lot of mystique about various issues of Rats. I sold a 'Woodcutter' Rat a while back for a song just because a certain chap who made them ('Woodcutter')  made better Rats...from the same components as everyone else who made them.

 

There you go :)

 

 

Anyway, original Whitefaces can go for up to £200 in good condition IIRC.

 

Fantastic!  Thanks for the advice.  I reckon closer to half that price is a pretty fair deal then.

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10 hours ago, Baloney Balderdash said:

I just recently read an article about Proco RAT's history, and the myth about this "Woodcutter" was mentioned too.

 

Turns out he was just some guy who was really fast at assembling RATs, that's right, he didn't make them, he just stuffed the parts together, as you say, the same parts as everyone else, and he had no knowledge whatsoever about electronics or pedal design.

 

The name is there so they could trace down any eventual faulty unit to whoever happened to assembly the specific individual unit in question, and this "Woodcutter" was as said really fast at assembling them, so he got his name on a lot of RATs, and the name he just got from a part time job cutting wood, to identify him as they had a lot of workers who shared his real name, which I fail to remember right now, nothing mysteriously really about it.

 

I find it ambiguously funny and depressing/tragic at the same time how much especially guitard gear heads seemingly completely uncritically believes and continues to replicate pure myths as if they were nature laws and keeps listening with their eyes, like as if their aural perception is filtered through this thick layer of pure nonsense. 

 

Ah, another part of the story - I didn't know that, thanks.

 

It does rather just add to the 'meh' somewhat :)

 

But yes, the 'mojo' associated with certain types or makes of pedals is quite staggering sometimes...much like the 'magic' LM308 chip. However...good news for those who have stuff to flog and can find a mojo-eyed buyer waiting with cash !

 

 

 

 

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I'm no expert but if you're not in a rush to sell I'd put it at quite a high price (£400) on Reverb or eBay for a while to test the waters, there is potentially a collector out there that is willing to pay a lot for 37 year old ratty looking rat! Some pedals look best pristine, but an 80s Rat is one that needs a bit of mojo.

 

I think this is the same model as yours and they are trying for £591: https://reverb.com/uk/item/54529910-proco-small-box-rat-1985-whiteface

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I recall buying a Vintage RAT in the late 90's. IIRC, they discontinued it in mid 2000's in favour of the other flavour RAT's they were doing at the time.

 

When I sold it, I recall breaking even even on it, but it was boxed and in good condition.

 

Looking at the condition of the enclosure in the pic, it does look somewhat "roadworn".

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18 hours ago, Skybone said:

 

 

Looking at the condition of the enclosure in the pic, it does look somewhat "roadworn".

I believe that's a common problem for rats of that era. Something to do with the paint they were using.

 

Personally I think it looks very cool. I'd definitely have it in my board.

 

Unfortunately, the hype around certain 'variants' of the rat, often with identical circuits, like these 'whiteface' ones means these sell for silly prices, as indicated above.

 

To me personally, it's worth about 70 quid, because any more than that and I'd rather get the new Chinese one, which sounds pretty much the same anyway.

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Thats a very cool, but very roadworn pedal. Its not going to command anywhere near the price of the collector-grade ones (£400-500). I'd say if you got £250, you'd be doing well (provided it works fine). Its got mega-mojo 😁 

 

 

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